LINCOLN McCarthy is now so entrenched in Brisbane, the dynamic forward barely remembers his pre-Lions injury battles.
After playing 41 of a possible 43 games at his second club, the 27-year-old has added another line to his resume, being selected in the club's 10-man leadership group announced on Tuesday.
McCarthy told AFL.com.au it was natural for him to care for teammates and help them to improve, although he wouldn't be changing much with the extra responsibility.
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"It's in my nature to be social and help my teammates and lead by example," he said.
"I think that's something I try to do most days at the club, as well as being really approachable."
Aside from the respect he's garnered, of most significance to McCarthy's rise in Brisbane has been the resilience in his body.
In seven seasons at Geelong he played just 29 senior games, riddled by a raft of setbacks that instigated his move north.
He has become an integral member of Chris Fagan's team, reliable in both attack and defence, kicking 35 goals and averaging almost four tackles a game.
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McCarthy says he doesn't think about the injury setbacks any more.
"I just look ahead now," he said.
"I forget that I missed so much footy.
"It's been a great run obviously. I just want to make sure no one's content, I'm not content, and we're in the club every day to get better.
"It's a pretty exciting group. We've put ourselves in a good position the last couple of years and we really want to capitalise on the list we've got at the moment.
"We want to make sure we get to the pointy end of the year, so we've got another crack."
Although he's about to enter his 10th season in the League, McCarthy believes he has genuine room for improvement.
After all, he now has two seasons of continuity and development, and is about to see more midfield minutes as the Lions try to get more power around the contest.
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"Whether people believe me or not (that he can improve) is a different story. I'm not really fazed by that to be honest anyway," he said.
"The moment I don't think I can get any better, is the moment I probably pull the pin.
"I think I've got a fair few more years in me yet.
"I want to be a reliable, trustworthy, predictable teammate in the midfield. It's exciting."
Dayne Zorko will captain Brisbane for a third straight year, with Harris Andrews as his deputy.